Religious Education Subject Leader: Miss D Thomas
Cliffe Woods Primary School will provide a high-quality Religious education curriculum that recognises and reflects all pupils’ beliefs and practices. Our curriculum is designed to reflect the guidance of the Medway Agreed syllabus. We aim to ensure that every pupil succeeds and develops a greater understanding of Religious Education and religious beliefs. It should provide opportunities for pupils to become more reflective of Spiritual, Moral and Cultural beliefs. Opportunities to celebrate a particular faith will aim to build greater empathy and help to embed values such as fairness and respect.
At Cliffe Woods Primary School, we believe Religious Education should be challenging, inspiring and fun. As our children progress through the school, from EYFS to KS2, they will develop their levels of religious literacy and conceptual understanding; be able to articulate, with confidence, their ideas about religion, beliefs and spirituality; and change their minds, if they choose to do so. Our intent is not to make pupils into believers, but to help them become literate and articulate about religions and beliefs, becoming thoughtful members of society as a result.
As well as being an essential component of a broad and balanced education, we recognise the significant contribution RE has to make to the promotion of British values. We believe that Religious Education, provides a key context to develop our pupils’ understanding and appreciation of diversity through the promotion of shared values and challenging racism and discrimination. From each child’s point of entry, the curriculum we provide allows them to develop their knowledge and understanding of a range of religions and traditions, and encourages them to explore their own beliefs (whether they are religious or non-religious).
It is our aim that the Religious Education we deliver at Cliffe Woods, helps our young people understand what it means to be human, encouraging empathy, generosity and compassion. Through our RE curriculum, it is our aim that the young people leaving our school will do so with an informed and empathetic understanding of different faith and ethnic groups which will not only help them flourish as citizens in a diverse society, but will also help promote cohesion and integration in our community.
Cliffe Woods uses the “Quigley Essentials Curriculum” model, alongside the Emmanuel Project RE Scheme to link in with the Medway SACRE agreed syllabus for Religious Education, as the basis for its RE curriculum planning. We use an enquiry-based model, where each unit is titled as a key question. Children have chance to explore these questions linked to a religion, being able to reflect on their own thoughts, ideas and experiences throughout.
The children are immersed in a curriculum that is coherent, progressive and is appropriately sequenced to enable our pupils to develop specific subject knowledge in order to prepare them well for their next stages of education. Using the milestones approach ensures the children embed the knowledge learnt in Religious Education, developing meaningful links and opening their eyes to a world beyond their locality as they progress through the key stages.
Each class from Year 1-6 receives 1 lesson of RE teaching per week alongside daily acts of collective worship. RE at Cliffe Woods is taught by class teachers who take responsibility for resourcing and delivering the curriculum, using the RE curriculum overview as the backbone to their teaching. Daily acts of collective worship, promoting the school values of Compassion, Integrity, Thankfulness, Resilience and Respect, are held daily, either in class or in the form of a key stage or whole school assembly.
Teachers are encouraged to adapt the medium-term plans to suit the needs of their children and make links to other themes and curriculum areas where appropriate, e.g. PSHE and the promoting of British Values. Links are also made with faith groups in the community, with visitors and parents being encouraged to come into the school to share their knowledge and values with the children.
All classes record their learning in a mixture of both their individual exercise books and the class RE scrapbook. The class scrapbook allows for visuals, pictures and quotes of their children’s voice to be captured of lessons that are more discussion based or practical in nature. For example, when the children are acting out religious stories, having a debate or discussion or visiting a place of worship.
Our RE curriculum helps children to:
- Acquire and develop their knowledge and understanding of Christianity and other principal religions represented in Great Britain: Sikhism, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism. Learners will also explore non-religions such as Humanism.
- Develop an understanding of the influence of beliefs, values and traditions on individuals, communities, societies and cultures.
- Develop the ability to make reasoned and informed judgements about religious and moral issues, with reference to the teachings of the principal religions represented in Great Britain.
- Develop a positive attitude towards other people, respecting their right to hold beliefs that are different to their own.
Enhance their spiritual, moral, cultural and social development by:
- Developing awareness of the fundamental questions of life raised by human experiences, and of how religious teaching can relate to them.
- Respond to such questions with reference to the teachings and practices of religions, and to their own understanding and experience.
- Reflect on their own beliefs, values and experience in the light of their study.
- Cross-curricular links Links can be made with a range of other curriculum areas perhaps notably English, Drama, Music, History, Geography and assemblies.
It is our aim that the Religious Education we deliver at Cliffe Woods helps our young people understand what it means to be human, encouraging empathy, generosity and compassion. They will show sensitivity to others and a readiness to listen to others’ viewpoints is strongly encouraged, showing respect whilst doing so. Through the exploration of multiple identities and local communities and through a deepening understanding of beliefs and practices, it is our aim that the young people leaving our school will do so with an informed, respectful and empathetic understanding of different faith and ethnic groups which will not only help them flourish as citizens in a diverse society but will also help promote cohesion and integration in our community.
Religious Education in Each Stage
In EYFS, our youngest learners explore different topics throughout the year linked to RE. Including, ourselves and our families (belonging), and celebrations (Diwali, Christmas, birthdays and Easter). They also explore other cultures and communities and look at the cohort’s own cultural family links. Through circle times, discussions and group tasks, the children are working towards having an understanding that other people have differing beliefs, customs and cultures and traditions.
Children in KS1 explore several topics in RE, focusing on the religions of Christianity and Judaism. They learn about a variety of religious celebrations including Christmas, Easter, Shabbat and Hannukah. Practices and beliefs and religious stories are also taught and children have the opportunity to make use of practical RE resources to embed their learning and enhance their understanding.
In KS2, RE topics are built upon KS1 to deepen the children’s knowledge of the subject. Children will delve further into the beliefs, belongings and rites of passage for Christianity and Judaism. In addition, throughout Key Stage 2 the children will be exposed to new religions including Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism and non-religions such as Humanism. The children are encouraged to express their opinions whilst also listening to others respectfully.
Religious Education Progression
Our SEND pupils are supported through our RE curriculum.